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Tuning into the Sound of Silence

Sunday, Sep 22, 2019

Location: Redstone Theater

With director Michael Tyburski in conversation with physicist Janna Levin

The Sound of Silence. Dir. Michael Tyburski. 2019, 85 min. Digital. With Peter Sarsgaard, Rashida Jones, Tony Revolori, Austin Pendleton. Through his job as a New York City “house tuner,” the hyper-methodical Peter (Peter Sarsgaard) works to tune discordant ambient noises—produced by everything from wind patterns to humming electrical appliances—adversely affecting his clients’ moods. When he takes on the particularly difficult case of Ellen (Rashida Jones), a lonely woman plagued by chronic exhaustion, Peter finds that the mysteries of the soul may be even greater than the mysteries of sound. The Sound of Silence premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival, and was made with support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. This screening will be followed by a conversation that considers the effects of sounds of which we are not typically aware. View trailer. An IFC Films release.


About the speakers: 

Michael Tyburski is a writer and director. His work has been featured on The New Yorker, Indiewire, NOWNESS, Short of the Week, and in Filmmaker Magazine, which named him one of the “25 New Faces of Independent Film.” His short film Palimpsest premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, where it won a Special Jury Prize. He was selected as a feature film fellow for Sundance Institute’s Music and Sound Design Lab at Skywalker Sound. The Sound of Silence is his feature-film debut.

Janna Levin is the Director of Sciences and Chair of the Science Studios at Pioneer Works as well as the Claire Tow Professor of physics and astronomy at Barnard College of Columbia University. A Guggenheim Fellow, Dr. Levin has contributed to an understanding of black holes, the cosmology of extra dimensions, and gravitational waves in the shape of spacetime. She is an acclaimed writer, and her latest book Black Hole Blues and Other Songs from Outer Space is about the discovery of the sound of spacetime, ringing from the collision of two black holes over a billion years ago.